Nutrition Articles

Eat Breakfast to Lose Weight

Why it's the most important meal of the day

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The first – and easiest – step you should take towards becoming more healthy is so, so simple; it’s eating breakfast. Breakfast eaters get myriad benefits including:
  • a revved up metabolism started early so that it burns the maximum number of calories to fuel your activities
  • fewer total calories consumed throughout the day
  • an increased leptin output
What’s leptin, you ask? Leptin is a hormone that suppresses appetite. Eating a significant meal early in the day ensures our body’s leptin production, says Meg Jordan, Ph.D., R.N. – as reported to First, September 2003. The book "Fit Not Fat at 40-Plus: The Shape-Up Plan That Balances Your Hormones, Boosts Your Metabolism, and Fights Female Fat in Your Forties-And Beyond", published by Prevention Health Books for Women, has more of Dr. Jordan’s thoughts on leptin’s influence on appetite.

Since leptin suppresses appetite, it follows that those of us who eat breakfast would take in fewer calories throughout the day. In fact, researchers at the University of Texas, El Paso, studied the food diaries of 586 men and women and determined that the more food people ate in the morning, the fewer calories they consumed in an entire day. So eat up early – though what we eat for breakfast may affect what we eat later on.

That’s right. Your first step to losing weight – eating breakfast – is not as simple as just popping any convenience food into your mouth. Eating refined carbohydrates such as sugary cereals, toasted white bread, waffles, or bagels will likely begin an overeating cycle. Instead, opt for complex carbs, proteins and fats. Whole wheat toast with peanut butter and a banana, or a bowl of high-fiber cereal with low-fat milk and blueberries are good examples. Both options are quick to get you out the door and on your way to starting your day.

Feeding yourself a healthy breakfast of complex carbs, proteins and fats should prevent your feeding the vending machine any money before lunch, making you thinner and your change purse fatter.
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About The Author

Elizabeth Evans Fryer Elizabeth Evans Fryer
Elizabeth is a freelance writer specializing in fitness topics. Through her writing, she hopes to move others to be as excited as she is about staying healthy.

Member Comments

  • PREACHERLADY565
    This is a tough one. I do not like eating breakfast. These says I try to force myself...because my husband is on this bandwagon about it being the most important meal of the day - but really! For me it sucks!
    - 8/2/2014 4:53:29 PM
  • I find that if I rush breakfast before I go to work I don't even remember eating it and neither does my stomach. However, when I get to work and have settled in I quite often have my porridge and enjoy every mouthful. This can be as early as 9.30 which I think is still Breakfast time! Then I am not so hungry at morning tea time or lunch time and my overall daily calorie intake is quite good during the day which means I have enough left to enjoy a nice night time meal and sometimes even a treat!
    - 5/15/2014 9:32:56 PM
  • I have been unemployed for approximately 2 months now, but I have had more time to focus and learn about myself and eating habits.
    I make an effort to eat a healthy breakfast each and every morning.
    I use to make it a habit to go to Subway each morning until I started to keep track of my calories and the cost that it was adding up to. - 9/5/2013 9:33:33 AM
  • I didn't use to eat breakfast either until peoples kept telling me I suppose to eat breakfast. So I eat it every morning. Then have my snack in between that an lunch and one between before dinner. - 9/4/2013 9:35:46 AM
  • Right on! I alternate between high fiber cereal with almond milk and plain greek yogurt with walnuts and any variation of blueberries, blackberries, and Granny Smith apples. - 12/20/2012 2:28:49 PM
  • NINAKPOOLE
    Today to maintain healthy body we need to work out in our foods,I think we should have heavy breakfast then less in lunch and very little in dinner.As in morning we must feel fresh and active we should have healthy and nutrition food in morning.If we will not have our breakfast an think that i will have in afternoon then this is not good,by this you can feel lazy to do any of your work.



    - 10/16/2012 2:53:34 AM
  • I eat several times a day, but my meals are not at standard meal times. I do not eat eggs, cereal or most of the foods commonly cosidered breakfast foods very often. I would say my meal pattern is more like 3 or 4 lunches a day. I like a number of fresh fruit or vegetables as a snack and a little greek yogurt of ice cream (low fat and sugar free of course) as a snack here and there. I am lactose intolerant so a little means a couple of teaspoons or I will pay for it later. I get several servings from one yogurt cup. How do I fit into a poll like this?? - 6/29/2012 8:33:08 AM
  • STAYFIT16
    You should take Egg, bread along with 1 cup green tea.For more information about Health visit stayfitnutrition website. - 6/29/2012 3:27:22 AM
  • So far, this is really working for me. I used to hate/skip breakfast. Just too busy, even as a child I never liked anything in the morning. Horrible habit. But the choices are endless. Lately, I've been enjoying my regular cup of coffee (8oz), maybe an Activa yogurt and a banana. Done! It doesn't have to be a huge meal. I'm lactose intolerant also, so cereal and milk make me sick. I feel like I've eaten and am not that famished by the time lunch rolls around. Also, breakfast helps me think clearly. - 5/20/2012 11:23:07 AM
  • MAMAOFTEN
    to eat or not to eat ? hungry or not ... i must have my oatmeal daily. why? to keep my cholesteol down and it is working for me! - 1/16/2012 12:46:02 AM
  • NOT TRUE. This absolutely does not work for me. It's a little insane to eat when you are not hungry. " Listen to your body" is a much better philosophy. MUST eat breakfast is another "trendy" thing, like NO FAT. This advice will change, too. Listen to your body. - 11/14/2011 6:44:41 AM
  • Although I do believe the principal behind eating a good breakfast I have a hard time eating much more than a bowl of cereal. I am afraid I will use to many of my allotted calories for breakfast and run out before the end of the day, then I won't be able to keep from going over my limit if I am still hungry in the late evening. Late evening is my hardest time to keep from snacking and I need some slack in my calories for then. - 10/11/2010 11:34:53 PM
  • KAKIPOPUP
    I am trying to eat only when I'm hungry - and I don't feel hungry until about 10 AM (or about 4 hours after I get up in the morning). When I eat breakfast earlier, I tend to start craving more food by about 10 AM, when I will eat my morning snack, lunch, and afternoon snack all at once - then I'm fine until supper. Eating breakfast keeps me from being in touch with my body's needs - which is a whole 'nother kettle of fish - I really don't think one size fits all for everything all of the time. - 7/10/2010 3:39:44 PM
  • Eating breakfast is the best. I used to not eat it at all in high school but what did I know as a teenager anyway. When I eat breakfast I find myself less hungry throughout the day and I'm not prone to overeating because I haven't triggered my body's hunger response. Breakfast is a beautiful thing. - 3/13/2010 10:32:11 AM
  • My experience exactly reflects what this article says. Waffles and bagels are sure guarantees of hunger pains the rest of the day. A piece of whole-grain oatmeal toast with peanut butter has staying power, and doesn't result in hunger. A bowl of oatmeal with skim milk is a sure fix and means no hunger pains for hours afterward; even more effective than the oatmeal toast with peanut butter. - 2/25/2010 8:47:49 AM

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